Valdemar is a massive fantasy fiction series spanning multiple collections of books and short stories. The work of Mercedes Lackey, the series takes place over the course of quite a few centuries.
Order of Valdemar: Mage Wars Series
|1||The Black Gryphon||1994||Description / Buy|
|2||The White Gryphon||1995||Description / Buy|
|3||The Silver Gryphon||1996||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: The Owl Mage Trilogy Series
|1||Owlflight||1997||Description / Buy|
|2||Owlsight||1998||Description / Buy|
|3||Owlknight||1999||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: Heralds Of Valdemar Series
|1||Arrow's Flight||1987||Description / Buy|
|2||Arrows of the Queen||1987||Description / Buy|
|3||Arrow's Fall||1988||Description / Buy|
|4||Take a Thief||2001||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: Collegium Chronicles Series
|1||Brightly Burning||2000||Description / Buy|
|2||Foundation||2008||Description / Buy|
|3||Intrigues||2010||Description / Buy|
|4||Changes||2011||Description / Buy|
|5||Redoubt||2012||Description / Buy|
|6||Bastion||2013||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: The Last Herald-Mage Series
|1||Magic's Pawn||1989||Description / Buy|
|2||The Last Herald-Mage||1990||Description / Buy|
|3||Magic's Promise||1990||Description / Buy|
|4||Magic's Price||1990||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: Mage Winds Series
|1||Winds of Fate||1991||Description / Buy|
|2||Winds of Change||1992||Description / Buy|
|3||Winds of Fury||1993||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: Mage Storms Series
|1||Storm Warning||1994||Description / Buy|
|2||Storm Rising||1995||Description / Buy|
|3||Storm Breaking||1996||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: Vows and Honor Series
|1||Sword Sworn (Short Story)||1986||Description / Buy|
|2||A Tale of Heroes (Short Story)||1987||Description / Buy|
|3||The Oathbound||1988||Description / Buy|
|4||Oathbreakers||1989||Description / Buy|
|5||Oathblood||1998||Description / Buy|
|6||Take a Thief||2001||Description / Buy|
|7||Exile's Honor||2002||Description / Buy|
|8||Exile's Valor||2003||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: Family Spies Series
|1||The Hills Have Spies||2018||Description / Buy|
|2||Eye Spy||2019||Description / Buy|
|3||Eye Spy||2019||Description / Buy|
|4||Spy, Spy Again||2020||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar: The Herald Spy Series
|1||Closer to Home||2014||Description / Buy|
|2||Closer to the Heart||2015||Description / Buy|
|3||Closer to the Chest||2016||Description / Buy|
Order of Valdemar Short Story Collections Series
|1||Valdemar Companion||1990||Description / Buy|
|2||Sword of Ice and Other Tales of Valdemar||1997||Description / Buy|
|3||Sun in Glory and Other Tales of Valdemar||2003||Description / Buy|
|4||Crossroads and Other Tales of Valdemar||2005||Description / Buy|
|5||Moving Targets and Other Tales of Valdemar||2008||Description / Buy|
|6||Changing the World||2009||Description / Buy|
|7||Finding the Way and Other Tales of Valdemar||2010||Description / Buy|
|8||Under the Vale and Other Tales of Valdemar||2011||Description / Buy|
|9||The One Left Behind (Short Story)||2014||Description / Buy|
|10||Crucible||2015||Description / Buy|
|11||Tempest||2016||Description / Buy|
|12||Pathways||2017||Description / Buy|
|13||Choices||2018||Description / Buy|
|14||Seasons||2019||Description / Buy|
The Mage Wars, the first collection of books in the series, kicks things off. It is within the confines of its debut novel, The Black Gryphon, that the foundations of the Valdemar series as a whole are built.
Readers are introduced to Urtho and Maar. Urthro is a creator. A mage of immense power, Urtho has always utilized his gifts in service of others. His days are spent creating magical creatures like the Gryphons with whose strength Urtho has continued the fight to keep all the people of the realm safe.
Maar is very much like Urtho in that he is a gifted mage. However, unlike Urtho, Maar has no interest in mastering his powers for the sake of the realm. His only goal is to subjugate all life.
Maar cannot create like Urtho. But he is quite adept at taking the creations Urtho makes and corrupting them.
For years, Urtho kept Maar at bay, maintaining a strained peace through the potency of his magical arts. But then Maar launched an all-out assault on Urtho and his city. The peaceful mage was forced to call upon both friend and foe.
Only through cooperation and unity could they hope to stay Maar’s hand and protect the realm.
Because The Black Gryphon is primarily concerned with Urtho and Maar’s battle, it tends to conform more closely to common fantasy fiction tropes.
You have an evil wizard threatening to destroy the world, and the good guys must fight tooth and nail to keep the tenets of justice and honor alive.
The sequels to The Black Gryphon are more atypical because they focus more on survival than anything else.
Rather than bringing about an end, the conclusion to Urthro and Maar’s battle is actually just the beginning. In the wake of the destruction unleashed by the Mage War, the survivors must find a home, build a new community and fend off those foes that are looking to hurt them while they are down.
While some attention is given to the likes of Skandranon Rashkae, the Black Gryphon, Amberdrake, and Gestern, at least in the beginning, these heroes and heroines eventually fade into the background, allowing new protagonists, in particular, their descendants, to steal the spotlight.
Magic’s Price won the Lambda Literary Award in 1990.
Best Valdemar Books
These novels are very deliberately-paced; they take quite a few chapters to get going, with some of the best titles in the series including:
Magic’s Pawn: Vanyel is special. He can use both Mage and Herald powers. But Vanyel wants to be a bard. He has no interest in pursuing his supernatural gifts. Unfortunately for the petulant fellow, his powers must be trained, lest they become a danger to Vanyel and those around him.
For that reason, Vanyel has been sent to his aunt, a Herald Mage. Savil will stop at nothing to hone his nephew’s potential. This is despite the fact that Vanyel is so self-centered and unfocused.
Magic’s Promise: Vanyel might be the most powerful Herald Mage the world has ever seen but even he has his limits.
The wild magic is running amok, taking a serious toll on the land. Vanyel thought he could keep it at bay. But he is quickly approaching his threshold. The last thing he needs is additional problems from Lineas.
But that is exactly what Yfandes brings to his doorstep. Before Vanyel can make sense of things, he is drawn into a maelstrom of dark magic that could cost him everything.
Other Book Series You May Like
You may also like “The House War” Series by Michelle West. Jay was quite young when she was abandoned in the slums of Averalaan. Her luck changed when Rath, a prowler of the Undercity, found and nursed her back to help.
Now Jay works alongside Rath to rescue other orphaned kids. And the den they are slowly building could make all the difference in the Empire’s conflict against a demonic foe.
Be sure to check out the “Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn” Series by Robert Silverberg as well. Simon is just a simple kitchen boy in the royal castle when he is drawn into an epic clash between an undead elf-like King and the league of scholars that must stop him from regaining his lost realm.
What Is The Next Book in The Valdemar: Mage Wars Series?
There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Valdemar: Mage Wars Series. The newest book is The Silver Gryphon and was released on January, 1st 1996.